Drainage Issues

Drainage Issues Policy

All reported drainage issues are reviewed and evaluated by the City of Aurora’s Engineering Division. The City assists neighborhoods in cases where large flood events are preventing emergency vehicles from assisting residents, a resident’s health is being directly affected, the safety of the homeowner is at risk each time it rains, or a resident’s property is adversely affected during a typical rain event. 

The Engineering Division reviews all cases and ultimately determines whether the drainage request falls within the City’s definition of a drainage issue and is within City Right of Way (ROW) or easements for further City involvement. 

For drainage issues that fall within a homeowner’s private property, the City has established helpful tips and guidelines for residents to review. These tips are potential solutions for homeowners to follow in order to resolve their drainage issues on their own private property. 

Standing water within the sidewalk, driveway aprons, and curb are not considered drainage issues unless substantial standing water remains 48 hours after a typical rain event. The City’s Engineering Division defines substantial standing water as non-flowing water with a minimum of two (2) inches in depth 48 hours after a rainfall event. Some areas are designed and graded to have water flow away from the house to a low point of a yard to protect the home’s foundation/basement and slowly infiltrate into the ground after a rain event. Keeping areas clear of debris and allowing adequate sunlight to dry the area is helpful.  

Please review the Drainage FAQ’s and the Drainage Tips for Homeowners/Residents. Please contact the City of Aurora’s Engineering Division with any other questions at (630) 256-3200.

Drainage Tips For Homeowners and Residents

  • Sump Pump & Backup – It is recommended to perform routine checks on your sump pump system and emergency backup. Make sure sump pump discharge water discharges away from your foundation to prevent cycling water.
  • Basement Waterproofing – Check for cracks or leaks on your basement walls or floor. Repair/patch immediately to stop groundwater from entering your home.
  • Extend Downspouts away from foundations (10 feet minimum away from property lines) – Downspouts should not terminate immediately at your foundation limits. If they do, it can cause that water to infiltrate into the ground around your foundation and cause issues in your home.
  • Rain Barrels – Purchase rain barrels, a large container for storing rainwater, to collect rain from your downspout and use it during a dry period for yard/garden irrigation. This reduces the amount of rainwater being ejected from the downspouts near your home during heavy rains.
  • Dry Well – Install an underground container that is perforated and allows rainwater to infiltrate into the ground. Install away from your foundation.   
  • French Drain – If you have problems with a wet yard, a French drain can help capture surface level ground water and direct it away from the troubled area. A French drain is a perforated pipe installed in the ground surrounded by filter fabric and pea gravel that allows groundwater to be channeled into the pipe and be directed away from wet areas.
  • Rain Garden/Native Plantings – Rain gardens use native plants with deep root systems.  These deep roots can help soak up excess water to help eliminate wet areas in your yard.
  • Regrading Yard Away from Foundation – After construction, the excavated material filled around the foundation of your home can settle over time. Ensure that rainwater runoff is directed away from your foundation by adding additional material to settled areas.
  • Connecting to City Storm Sewer – The City of Aurora allows homeowners to connect to the existing storm sewer system. In some cases, the City can also extend a sewer line and install new structures to solve major drainage issues or allow for a homeowner to extend their private drain lines into the City’s storm structures. Please contact the City of Aurora’s Engineering Division to review the process with you if interested in this option.